Keynote Sessions

When Life is Hard: Challenge, Resilience, and Thriving

Speakers: Angela Duckworth, Ana McCullough
Many QuestBridge Scholars and Alumni have faced profound challenges in life, including and especially the last 14 months. What does it mean for individuals, families, and communities to have resilience in the face of hardships like constrained resources, injustice, and other life challenges? Join us for real talk with one of the world’s foremost experts on grit, resilience, and thriving, Angela Duckworth, who is the Founder & CEO of Character Lab and author of the bestselling book, Grit. Angela will be sharing her thoughts and experiences in dialogue with Ana McCullough, Co-Founder & CEO of QuestBridge.

Walking In Your Power

Speakers: Carlos Watson, Beverly Watson
What does it look like to live authentically? How can we think about the conditions, influences, and people that helped create who we are today, from a place of strength and opportunity? Join siblings, Carlos and Beverly Watson, as they share their journeys as successful entrepreneurs, and lessons learned from creating lives of impact through a variety of fields from journalism to education.

Breakout Sessions

Dealing with Crisis: Strategies to Support your Mental Health

Speakers: Dan Tzuang, M.D., Caroline Lee, Ph.D.
Join a clinical psychologist and psychiatrist, who have worked with children, teens, and adults, as they share strategies to support your mental health, especially during these times of crisis. The session will focus on questions about seeking therapy, taking medication, as well as strategies on coping with isolation, academic pressures, and family obligations. We’ll also leave time for your Q&A.

When Your Plans Change: Making a Career Transition

Speakers: Oscar Wong, Elizabeth Denhup, Fernando Rios, M.D., Karissa Justice
Sometimes the plan just doesn’t work out. As you learn more about your personal identity, strengths, and priorities, you might decide to pivot your career path. Our QuestBridge Alumni panel will offer tips on how to plan your next transition – we will cover how to create your gameplan, the mental and tactical steps in achieving your goal, and how much finances factor into decision making.

You Belong: Navigating Fear and Doubt in the Academy

Speaker: Demetrius Colvin
Have you experienced imposter syndrome since coming to college? Do you experience fear and doubt related to whether or not you belong at your institution? Who gets to determine whether or not you belong or matter at your school? This workshop will focus on explaining the psychosocial dynamics of navigating imposter syndrome that marginalized and underrepresented students in college may face as they matriculate. Participants will gain a more nuanced understanding of how doubt, fear, mattering, and belonging impact their educational journey and practice internalizing their sense of worth and validation.

Reimagine Networking: Creating Genuine Connections

Speakers: Shellby Fabian, Aleyna Bedir, Anjalique Knight, Sebastian Tilson
The practice of cultivating a network can be intimidating, especially for first-gen, low-income, marginalized, or underrepresented students and alumni, but we hear all the time that “it’s about who you know, not what you know.” How do you genuinely connect with industry peers to pave the way towards new opportunities and experiences? We are leading a discussion with QuestBridge Alumni to reframe what networking truly means to make it more approachable no matter where you are in your education or career.

Overcoming Adversity: One Scholar’s Mental Wellness Journey

Speaker: Cherrial Odell
The pandemic has revealed a critical need to address mental health across the nation, especially in low-income communities. Join QuestBridge Scholar, Cherrial Odell, who took a gap year to work for the Inspiring Children Foundation, mentoring others, acting as a spokesperson, and leading wellness initiatives. Cherrial will share her own story of navigating anxiety, depression, and suicide attempts as a teenager. Having spent several years honing mindfulness and meditation techniques, she will walk audience members through a guided practice and open dialogue about the tools that helped her find happiness.

Racial Justice: What Does it Look Like & How Do We Get There

Speakers: Shawon Jackson, Viet Nguyen, Yakira Mirabito
With increased attention on racial justice across the world, we have a unique moment to make real, sustained change. But what should that look like? And how can we get there? Join QuestBridge Scholars and Alumni in an open, candid conversation about what we can do, individually and collectively, to address the ongoing oppression we see against communities of color. Let’s plan for a more just future, today.